CHICAGO – If you’ve registered for federal disaster assistance and received a letter saying you’re ineligible, make sure to double check that you provided all the necessary information when you initially applied.
Federal Emergency Management Agency eligibility determinations are based on information an individual supplies in an online application or during a phone call with a FEMA representative.
Since May 10, when the disaster was declared for the spring storms and flooding, homeowners and renters in 11 Illinois counties have been applying for disaster assistance. To date, more than $38.4 million has been approved for more than 12,100 eligible applicants.
Applicants who received a determination letter, but were deemed ineligible may just need to supply additional information to FEMA.
“We want to make sure eligible Illinois residents who suffered damages or uninsured losses as a result of the spring storm receive disaster assistance,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Moore. “The best thing for applicants to do to make sure this happens is to read the FEMA correspondence carefully and follow up with us.”
Following are just a few of the reasons an applicant may have received an ineligibility notification and can follow up.
- Sometimes a first ineligibility determination is simply a clerical error, such as a name is misspelled, an address doesn’t match or a signature has been left out.
- If more than one person from the same home address registered, the applications will be flagged until the head of household can be determined.
- The applicant has insurance, and more information about the policy is needed. FEMA cannot duplicate benefits. However, once you receive insurance payment, FEMA may be able to assist with uninsured losses.
- Proof of occupancy is required. Whether a homeowner or renter, the damaged dwelling must be a primary residence where the applicant lived at the time of the disaster.
- Identity verification is needed. Sometimes an applicant simply needs to submit documentation—such as a passport or military issued ID—so a social security number can be verified. If an applicant was recently married, a marriage certificate or license may be required to verify any name change.
If you have questions about any FEMA correspondence you receive, call 800-621-FEMA (3362), the toll-free line used for registration and follow-up. Have your FEMA application number available so the representative can find your case easily.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
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